Quitting the Man: 46 Days Since Freedom

Time for another at-irregular-intervals update on what’s been happening since I quit my job.

Why don’t I pick an interval and stick to it? Because then I would have to, you know, stick to it. Which means I would instantly stop updating because I would feel flaky for not being able to stick to my chosen interval.

Body stuff update

Maybe because it was freezing when I was in Sacramento, or maybe because it’s more humid there than here in Phoenix, I coughed a lot when I was there.

It wasn’t until a couple days after I came home that I Finally. Stopped. Coughing. I seriously thought it would never end.

That’s over, but there are some other weirdnesses that I won’t describe here.

One thing that has been pretty interesting is that ever since the crick I got a few weeks ago, my back has been feeling really good. Yeah, I still get sore, but that seems reasonable considering the number of hours every day that I sit in front of the computer.

Time management experiments

I’ve been craving some form of structure for my days, because the flailing is getting a little old.

I’m embarking on some experiments to find things that work for me, but almost instantly I’m finding myself rebelling against the structure. Or at least against the “rules” of the structure, which means the structure pretty much falls apart.

I’m okay with that, because despite the lack of structure, I am making progress on some business-y things. For now, I’m just going to chalk it up to part of the de-institutionalization process.

Fun patterns

By “fun patterns,” I don’t mean patterns that are fun. I mean the patterns I have around fun.

As in, I don’t know how to have it.

I can understand why – it was never a priority.

When I was in school, getting straight A’s was the priority, and extra-curriculars were something I resented because they took time away from getting good grades. (Want a fun read? Fabeku wrote a great post about the whole report card/perfectionism thing.)

Then when I was working full-time at jobs that were sucking my soul dry, I simply didn’t have the energy to think about adopting a hobby.

The few attempts I made at creative pursuits always had this underlying goal to be a source of income. If I determined that I didn’t want to make that hobby my career, I dropped it.

Plus, when I was working full-time and trying to start my business, my free time was devoted to that, and again I didn’t have time to worry about hobbies. Then, especially compared to my job, doing things for my business really did serve as my amusement.

Now, though. Now, this blog and coaching are my full-time career, and I’m starting to notice that I need something “fun” (in quotes because I don’t even know what that means, for me) to do, so that I don’t burn out.

I think there is some sort of big stuck associated with hobbies and fun and creative pursuits. It’s something I’ve suspected for a while, and now it’s confirmed. No wisdom to share, yet.

This coming week-ish

More experimenting with adding structure to my days. Maybe I’ll post separately about that.

Doing some Shiva Nata around my hobby issues, while also gently finding ways to be creative just for fun.

Lots of reflecting about 2009, and also the past 12 months – it’s just a couple weeks until my blog’s first birthday.

Has the reality of this change set in, yet?

Maybe it’s my rebellious side coming out, but I’m growing bored with this rating stuff. Yet, I do think there’s value in checking in with myself in a high-level kind of way.

My main high-level realization this week is that the novelty of full-time coaching has worn off just enough that I do need to have some kind of outlet to demarcate my off-time from my work-time. And I think it’s good that I’m noticing it now, rather than after burn-out sets in.

Oh, fine, I’ll give it a number: 4.5 out of 10. Happy?

9 thoughts on “Quitting the Man: 46 Days Since Freedom

  1. Briana

    Victoria, I love this! The time management part feels like a download from my own brain. And I think it’s definitely related to some corporate heebie-jeebie patterns for me, too.

    Here’s to Fun! Or maybe starting to be okay with possibly exploring it. Eventually.
    .-= Briana´s last blog ..You’re not the boss of me. Anymore. =-.

  2. Bridget Pilloud

    I too have a hard time having fun without a purpose.
    Might I suggest horseback riding lessons? They helped me.
    The other thing I’ve been doing that’s fun is playing music at grooveshark and dancing around my confused dog. The song Tangerine Speedo seems to do wonders.
    I know you’ll figure this fun thing out.
    .-= Bridget Pilloud´s last blog ..Bridget’s Holiday Gift Guide… =-.

  3. elizabeth

    As ever, love reading your updates. They make me want to know what it feels like for me.

    My problem with fun is that I feel like my choices aren’t good enough. (To whom, dunno ..) Like, taking photos is fun, or reading, but if I need to add more fun into my life, I feel like they don’t count – like I should be out riding roller coasters or something. This is cracking me up to read ..

    I hope you find the right fun for you. Hey – did you ever read The Artist’s Way? There’s a concept in there about weekly artist dates with yourself (whatever you want to do that is fun – I tended to sit in coffee shops and read). Maybe a way of exploring the idea and easing into it ..
    .-= elizabeth´s last blog ..the warm, it is calling me =-.

    1. elizabeth

      I meant that my reply is cracking me up. It is funny to know that there is part of me that thinks only things like roller coasters can be considered fun.

  4. Linnea (cafemercury)

    “The few attempts I made at creative pursuits always had this underlying goal to be a source of income. If I determined that I didn’t want to make that hobby my career, I dropped it.”

    Oh, how I laughed and winced at that one. (BTW, how long have you been lurking ’round my brain?

    Still working on it. The Artist’s Way is a big help.

  5. Kelly Parkinson

    Your hobby story sounds exactly like my hobby story. I haven’t had a hobby since I used to knit as an only child because I had nothing else to do. (Aha! Maybe that’s why I resist knitting so much now? I associate it with something I used to have to do because we moved to the top of a hill where there were no kids?)

    Anyway, I second Elizabeth’s Artist’s Way recommendations. Anyone who tells me every writer MUST have a car–so they can travel great distances every week for perspective–is alright in my book. I really need to start doing morning pages again!

    Maybe Dance of Shiva could count as a hobby for now? It sounds like one to me! Give yourself some credit! You’ve got at least one seriously great hobby that most people don’t even know exists!

  6. Victoria Post author

    Thanks, guys, for all your wonderful comments!

    Funny that we have three votes for the Artist’s Way. I own it, tried it, and absolutely couldn’t get through it. I didn’t find her writing engaging at all. (Sorry!)

    I suppose I could give the morning pages and artist’s dates another shot, since when I tried to go through the book before, I was still working full time. There was no way I was getting up any earlier than I already was for stinkin’ morning pages, you know?

    @Kelly – I think Dance of Shiva definitely qualifies as one of the geekiest hobbies ever. Geeky in a good way, of course! (You can take the girl out of IT, but you can’t take the geek out of the girl.)

    @Bridget – I was about to ask you, what is a grooveshark, but then I remembered this crazy thing called Google. I’d never heard of grooveshark before! And Tangerine Speedo? Awesome.

  7. Lydia, Clueless Crafter

    Victoria, I tried the Artist’s Way thing too but found it mind numbing. I’d rather workout – for 10 days straight!

    Congrats again and again on quitting the “man” and being your own woman. By the way, when will it ever be “working for the woman”? I’m tired of this man stuff.
    .-= Lydia, Clueless Crafter´s last blog ..Don’t Be Tardy for the Party =-.

  8. Victoria Post author

    @Lydia – Glad to have someone in my corner on the Artist’s Way thing. :) But I don’t know if I’d ever want it to be “working for the woman”. I mean, why would we want something so icky associated with our gender? The men can have this one, as far as I’m concerned. But if they don’t want it, maybe it should be “working for the monster” or “working for the insert-non-gender-specific-term-for-someone-unpleasant-here”. That last one might be a little long, though.

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